Dr Prabhakar Rajan

PhD, FRCS (Urol), FHEA
Clinical Senior Lecturer in Urology
Group Leader
Research Focus

My laboratory research explores alternative pre-mRNA splicing in prostate cancer (PCa) biology, and liquid biopsy-derived molecular biomarkers of treatment outcomes. My clinical research investigates chemo-preventative strategies to reduce low risk PCa progression, and surgical alternatives to cytotoxic chemotherapy for metastatic testicular cancer.

Key Publications

Identification of altered biological processes in heterogeneous RNA-sequencing data by discretization of expression profiles. Nucleic Acids Res (2020) 48(4):1730-1747. PMID: 31889184

Androgen Receptor Burden and Poor Response to Abiraterone or Enzalutamide in TP53 Wild-Type Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. JAMA Oncol (2019) 5(7):1060-1062. PMID: 31046065

Oncologic Outcomes After Robot-assisted Radical Prostatectomy: A Large European Single-centre Cohort with Median 10-Year Follow-up. Eur Urol Focus (2018) 4(3):351-359. PMID: 28753802

Effect of Comorbidity on Prostate Cancer-Specific Mortality: A Prospective Observational Study. J Clin Oncol (2017) 35(31):3566-3574. PMID: 28930493

Next-generation sequencing of advanced prostate cancer treated with androgen-deprivation therapy. Eur Urol (2014) 66(1):32-9. PMID: 24054872

Major Funding
  • 2020-2021- CRUK Barts Centre Development Fund, Exploiting PTEN loss in Hypoxic Tumour Cells (Principal Investigator), £10,000

  • 2018-2021- QMUL Life Sciences Initiative PhD Studentship, Understanding alternative splicing in human cancer by proteomics informed by transcriptomics (PIT) (Co-applicant with Professor Conrad Bessant), ~£80,000

  • 2017-2021- The Urology Foundation/The John Black Charitable Foundation Project Grant, Androgen receptor splice variants in prostate cancer (Principal Investigator), £249,999

Other Activities
  • 2019 to date- Member: National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Teenage & Young Adults (TYA) and Germ Cell Tumours Clinical Studies Group (CSG) (Germ Cell Tumours Subgroup)
  • 2019 to date- Member: NCRI Prostate Cancer CSG (Advanced Disease Subgroup)
Research

My laboratory-based research programme explores a link between alternative pre-mRNA splicing (AS), a ubiquitous post-transcriptional gene regulatory mechanism, and prostate cancer (PCa) phenotypes.  During AS, coding (exons) and non-coding (introns) regions of a gene are shuffled to create protein isoforms with different functions.  AS is regulated by trans-acting RNA-binding proteins (RBPs), and tightly coupled to transcription. We are studying the link between dysregulation of transcriptional and intracellular signalling processes and AS, mediated by RBPs. 

Our translational research examines how blood-derived liquid biopsy molecular biomarkers can be used to improve treatment outcomes for PCa patients. With NHS colleagues, we are investigating minimally-invasive surgical alternatives to chemotherapy for metastatic testicular cancer to reduce the therapy burden and toxicity. In collaboration with the Wolfson Institute of Preventative Medicine, we are exploring how minimally-toxic chemo-preventative strategies may reduce PCa progression on active surveillance.

Other Activities
  • 2019 to date- Member: National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Teenage & Young Adults (TYA) and Germ Cell Tumours Clinical Studies Group (CSG) (Germ Cell Tumours Subgroup)
  • 2019 to date- Member: NCRI Prostate Cancer CSG (Advanced Disease Subgroup)
Major Funding
  • 2020-2021- CRUK Barts Centre Development Fund, Exploiting PTEN loss in Hypoxic Tumour Cells (Principal Investigator), £10,000

  • 2018-2021- QMUL Life Sciences Initiative PhD Studentship, Understanding alternative splicing in human cancer by proteomics informed by transcriptomics (PIT) (Co-applicant with Professor Conrad Bessant), ~£80,000

  • 2017-2021- The Urology Foundation/The John Black Charitable Foundation Project Grant, Androgen receptor splice variants in prostate cancer (Principal Investigator), £249,999
  • 2013-2019- Royal College of Surgeons of England/Cancer Research UK- Clinician Scientist Fellowship in Surgery, Analysis of alternative splicing in prostate cancer metastasis regulated by the RNA-binding proteins Sam68 and hnRNP A2/B1 (Principal Investigator), >£800,000
Recent Publications

Peri-operative, functional and early oncologic outcomes of salvage robotic-assisted radical prostatectomy after high-intensity focused ultrasound partial ablation Thompson JE, Sridhar AN, Shaw G et al. BMC urology (2020) 20(7) 81

Identification of altered biological processes in heterogeneous RNA-sequencing data by discretization of expression profiles Lauria A, Peirone S, Giudice MD et al. Nucleic Acids Research (2020) 48(7) 1730-1747

Early outcomes of robot-assisted radical prostatectomy following completion of a structured training curriculum: a single surgeon cohort study Sehmbi AS, Sridhar AN, Sahadevan K et al. Journal of Clinical Urology (2020) (7)

Reply by Authors Xu L, Mao X, Grey A et al. The Journal of urology (2020) 203(1) 81-82

Elevated driver mutational burden or number of perturbed pathways and poor response to abiraterone or enzalutamide in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer De Laere B, Crippa A, Ghysel C et al. ANNALS OF ONCOLOGY (2019) 30(11)
http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000491295500319&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=612ae0d773dcbdba3046f6df545e9f6a

Noninvasive Detection of Clinically Significant Prostate Cancer Using Circulating Tumor Cells. Xu L, Mao X, Grey A et al. The Journal of Urology 203(1) 101097JU000000000000-101097JU000000000000
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31389764

Investigation of plasma exosomal miRNA as a biomarker and its potential function in prostate cancer castration resistant development Guo T, Wang Y, Mao X et al. CANCER RESEARCH (2019) 79(11)
http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000488129901075&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=612ae0d773dcbdba3046f6df545e9f6a

Pathological Findings and Magnetic Resonance Imaging Concordance at Salvage Radical Prostatectomy for Local Recurrence following Partial Ablation Using High Intensity Focused Ultrasound. Thompson JE, Sridhar AN, Tan WS et al. J Urol (2019) 201(1) 1134-1143
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30730409

Androgen Receptor Burden and Poor Response to Abiraterone or Enzalutamide in TP53 Wild-Type Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. De Laere B, Rajan P, Grönberg H et al. JAMA Oncol (2019) (1)
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31046065

PEOPLE: PatiEnt prOstate samPLes for rEsearch, a tissue collection pathway utilizing magnetic resonance imaging data to target tumor and benign tissue in fresh radical prostatectomy specimens Heavey S, Costa H, Pye H et al. Prostate (2019) 79(7) 768-777

For additional publications, please click here
Team

Postdoctoral Researchers
Dr John Foster

PhD Student
Mr Esteban Gea (with Professor Conrad Bessant)

 

Biography

Key qualifications

  • 2008 PhD (Prostate Cancer Biology), Newcastle University
  • 2012 FRCS(Urol.), Royal College of Surgeons of England
  • 2017 FHEA, Higher Education Academy

Recent appointments

  • 2008-2014 West of Scotland Training Programme in Urology
  • 2008-2013 Clinical Lecturer in Urology, University of Glasgow
  • 2013-2015 Clinical Research Fellow, University of Glasgow
  • 2015-to date Consultant Urologist, Barts Health and University College London Hospitals NHS Trusts
  • 2015-to date Clinical Senior Lecturer in Urology, Queen Mary University of London
  • 2018 to date Turing Fellow, The Alan Turing Institute